Best way to clean old coins? Pre decimals.

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With all the different cleaning methods out there, some good and some not so good. I would like to ask what method everyone is using to clean up old coins?
 
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For cleaning silvers I've tried that many different ways I've lost count. There's the lemon juice or sticking the coin in half a lemon, CLR, spit and alfoil, even made a electrolisis device out of the missus' old phone charger, she was not happy that day!!! The main thing is to not leave it in any of these methods for to long or it will pitt the coin, and after cleaning it have some bi-carb on hand to make a paste and rub the coin with that to de-activate the acidic action of the cleaning ways mentioned. But if it is a coin of any value, dont clean it as it will de-value it. As for cleaning copper coins, if there's a way I'de love to know myself, electrolisis in a salt mixture works but the coins pit easy and turn orange.
 

dave14110

David Gothard
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warm soapy water. nearly all other metheds destroy or devalue coins. It is not recomended to clean old coins. As for Decimal (Current currency) Tumbler seems to work best. Then spend'em.
 

Grechie

Andrew Grech
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how would you clean chunks of metal?, i found 4 chunks today, there nothing more then lead, but id like to know how i can clean them to see them better, and to atleast make sinkers out of em if they are lead.
 
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brasso seems to polish them up well, or wack it on the buff wheel like on a grinder setup works sweet, how do u think I got mine looking like new lol. don't tell the coin buyer how it looks so good.
 
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Grechie said:
how would you clean chunks of metal?, i found 4 chunks today, there nothing more then lead, but id like to know how i can clean them to see them better, and to atleast make sinkers out of em if they are lead.


steel wool for that should be fine
 
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If you clean the coins they will have no value to them apart from the silver or copper content. Dealers can tell when a 60 year old coin has wear on it but as clean as it was from the mint
 
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Sa_bogan said:
If you clean the coins they will have no value to them apart from the silver or copper content. Dealers can tell when a 60 year old coin has wear on it but as clean as it was from the mint

I agree. I only attempt to clean unrecognisable coins or ones of no real value in the first place. Cleaning copper coins is the most difficult and I still haven't found a decent method for doing this.
 
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DO NOT use the salt and vinegar cleaning method on Copper, it does clean the coin somewhat but it makes it look like absolute crap :eek:
 

the duck

Trevor
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the best way for copper is to tumble them in fine garnet and they dont lose their patina and come out great takes a while at least a few hours and dont put alot in at once,but dont clean a key date coin let a professional do it dont even rub it with your fingers to get the dirt off
 

Goldbuzzhashit

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Ha guys, just read the post after finding some pennies and half's, how would a ultrasonic cleaner go? Use one at work for small science parts! :/
 

Dogmatic

Matt
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The salt and vinegar works well with our current decimal coins. (1/4 cup vinegar to 1 tsp salt) I used one of those plastic drink (Tupperware) mixers/shakers
and shook it up with the decimal coins in it. Let is sit for a while did it again then new solution, shake, sit, shake, rinse.
come out as good as new. I suppose the longer it sits the better. Mine was only about 1/2 hour.

Not sure about older coins. I cleaned $50 worth of coins in one hit like this. Many went from unreadable to being able
to go straight back into circulation. Very little effort.
 

Beer Pig

Harry
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As a coin collector, cleaning coins is not ideal but if they are very grubby try -- for silver they have finally brought back a silver dip which for years was off the shelf including tarnoff. 20 secs s what you should need. for copper for a complete strip back try silver dip or the best result is green dishwashing liquid and a tooth brush and maybe a toothpick for harder lumps

hope this helps

Harry
 

Jed

Jed Bartlett
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I would be grateful for any advice on cleaning coins - current decimal coins, pre-decimal coins & valuable old coins.
cheers
Jed
 
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